How climate change is affecting the Arctic

Starting with the industrial revolution, human progression has continually increased carbon dioxide emissions, driving up temperatures. The consequences can be seen, for instance, in the presence of extreme weather and melting polar ice among other, more devastating effects.

What Is Climate Change?

The world’s average temperature under normal conditions is about 15°C. Many argue this number is irrelevant since the Earth’s temperature suffers of natural fluctuations. However, scientists have proven that temperature are now rising faster than ever before.

This is connected to the greenhouse effect, which depicts how the Earth’s atmosphere traps a portion of the Sun’s energy.

When the Sun’s energy reaches the Earth’s atmosphere, some of it is reflected back to space and the rest is absorbed and re-radiated by greenhouse gases.

This process warms both the lower atmosphere and the Earth’s surface. Without the greenhouse effect, the Earth would be about 30° Celsius colder and antagonistic to life.

Researchers agree that by increasing carbon dioxide emissions, we are adding to the greenhouse effect. The major culprits being the manufacturing industry and the farming industry.

This is known as climate change or global warming.

Climate Change and the Arctic

The effects of climate change are present sooner in the Arctic, and with sudden and more serious results than in the rest of the world. The Arctic is warming at a rate double the average and the melting of arctic ice and permafrost and changes in climate are progressively noticeable.

As warming in the Arctic has increased, sea-ice which represents the habitat of many species has now been reduced in extent and volume and its quality (ice fragmentation and deterioration) is worse than ever.

The effects of these changes may be seen in the form of both, reduced fitness of animal s and altered population parameters (one population increasing in numbers and other diminishing).

To give an example of how the change in sea-ice can affect the ecosystem, let’s take a look at ice-breeding seals. They are dependant on the sea-ice, but since it’s melting away, they will have to adapt. The problem is that we don’t know how this adaptation will affect them, or if they will even be capable of adapting to the switch of mating inland.

Many Arctic marine mammals will also be affected indirectly as the food webs on which they depend undergo changes. Restructured food webs, changes in prey populations and the arrival of new marine mammal species (including new predators), competitors, and pathogens from more temperate seas will challenge the Arctic species

Although many scientists have emphasized known and expected negative impacts on Arctic marine mammals, some species or populations are likely to experience little change or benefit from more favorable conditions. For example, the body condition of bowhead whales has improved as the open water season has lengthened in the Beaufort Sea.

The melting ice and higher temperatures create opportunities for oil and gas exploration and development, shipping, tourism, commercial fishing, and military operations. These activities expose Arctic marine mammals to a variety of threats, including ship strikes, pollution, entanglement in fishing nets or lines, and exposure to human-caused sound and other forms of disturbance that previously either had been absent or had been present only on a much smaller scale.

In what manner will climate change influence us?

There is vulnerability about how incredible the effect of a changing climate will be.

It could cause freshwater deficiencies, significantly adjust our capacity to create food, and increment the quantity of passings from floods, storms, and heatwaves. This is on the grounds that climate change is relied upon to expand the recurrence of outrageous climate occasions – however connecting any single occasion to global warming is convoluted.

As the world warms, more water vanishes, prompting more dampness noticeable all around. This implies numerous zones will encounter increasingly extraordinary precipitation – and in certain spots snowfall. In any case, the danger of dry season in inland regions during blistering summers will increment. Additional flooding is normal from tempests and rising ocean levels. Be that as it may, there are probably going to be solid territorial varieties in these examples.

Less fortunate nations, which are least outfitted to manage fast change, could endure the most.

Plant and creature annihilations are anticipated as territories change quicker than species can adjust. What’s more, the World Health Organization (WHO) has cautioned that the wellbeing of millions could be compromised by increments in jungle fever, water-borne illness, and ailing health.

As more CO2 is discharged into the air, take-up of the gas by the seas builds, making the water become increasingly acidic. This could present serious issues for coral reefs.

Global warming will bring about additional changes that are probably going to make further warming. This incorporates the arrival of enormous amounts of methane as permafrost – solidified soil discovered fundamentally at high scopes – dissolves.

Reacting to climate change will be probably the greatest test we face this century.